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Lowe Motor Inn (Spencer Hotel)

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Spencer Hotel
c. 1910. 401–411 Main St. (northwest corner of Main and 4th sts.)
  • (West Virginia Collection within the Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division)

Downtown's largest structure, this combination hotel-mercantile building, like the post office, was built when Point Pleasant's ambitions were high. It demonstrates a certain confusion regarding architectural allegiances. Rock-faced pilasters separate first-floor commercial bays along Main Street, while those flanking the hotel's corner entrance rise an extra half story and are topped with elaborate Romanesque caps. Above, the theme is Georgian Revival. Here, three stories of hotel rooms are faced in brick, their paired windows capped with splayed sandstone lintels. A classical entablature with rosettes in the frieze and dentils and modillions in the cornice tops things off. Inside, a fireplace surrounded with a bright green tiled mantel is the focal point of the two-story lobby.

The brick-paved town wharf used to be at the west end of 4th Street near the hotel. Remnants still survive on the river side of the floodwall.

Writing Credits

S. Allen Chambers Jr.

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